Governor Tim Walz issued Executive Order 20-38 April 17, which expands allowable outdoor recreational activities. The changes will allow Minnesotans to continue to enjoy the outdoors close to home while following social distancing guidelines.

Executive Order 20-38 allows Minnesotans to engage in a range of activities, including golfing, boating, fishing, hunting and hiking, as long as they follow new outdoor recreation guidelines. These guidelines include maintaining six-foot social distancing, avoiding crowded areas, and staying close to home.

“It’s important for us to stay active and enjoy the outdoors while preventing the spread of COVID-19,” said Walz. “This measure will allow Minnesotans to take advantage of more opportunities to get outside, while still doing their part to keep their neighbors healthy.”

Under Executive Order 20-38, facilities that may reopen or remain open include:

• Bait shops for live bait

• Outdoor shooting ranges and game farms

• Public and private parks and trails

• Golf courses and driving ranges

• Boating and off-highway vehicle services, including: marina services, dock installation and other lake services and boat and off-highway vehicle sales and repair, by appointment only

Campgrounds and dispersed camping, outdoor recreational equipment retail stores, recreational equipment rental, charter boats, launches, and guided fishing remain closed.

Minnesotans should continue to take part in outdoor activities close to their primary residence. Staying home helps protect Minnesotans from spreading COVID-19 and limits pressure on rural medical facilities and essential supplies.

These new provisions will went into effect April 18 and will have the full force and effect of law upon approval by the executive council.

Learn more about outdoor recreation opportunities on the Minnesota Department of Natural Resources (DNR) Web site at

– Image courtesy of the DNR Web site